Creating employment opportunities and increasing the national income, the tourism sector contributes to increased prosperity. In the Tenth Development Plan of Turkey covering the 2014-2018 period, it has been emphasized that sustainable tourism activities will be enhanced within the scope of an environmentally sensitive and responsible tourism understanding and the sociocultural and environmental degradation associated with tourism will be reduced. In the implementation of tourism activities for local and regional economic development, the main objective is minimizing the impact on the environment and socio-cultural structures.

In this study, sustainable tourism opportunities in settlements, of which development is based on tourism, are elaborated and the Göreme Municipality, whose tangible and intangible cultural assets are at risk of being lost due to the indirect effects of uncontrolled tourism, are chosen as the study area. Settlements such as Göreme that owe their economic development success to culture tourism have to protect their existing natural, cultural, and social features in order to ensure the continuation of this development. While conservation of the gained identities of settlements is a necessity for urban and regional development, it is also a requirement to feel the sense of belonging to the city or the region. The Göreme Municipality is a settlement with an identity thanks to the existence of a cultural landscape and in such settlements, although the main objective of tourism is to enhance the quality of life economic viability, the sustainability of tangible and intangible assets that should be protected should not be thrown into the background. However, the study results suggest that with the transformation of the old residential buildings of the region built using traditional materials to hotels due to demand pressures, the local population becomes alienated from the town and the culture around them.

The sustainability of the intangible cultural heritage has not been achieved; the real estate in the region changed hands with the appeal of hotel investments to investors out of the region; and the low level of utilization of the local people from increased revenues has led to a failure in ensuring regional development and a fall in the quality of life of residents in the area. It is understood that in case the current trends continue, tourism will have a damaging structure rather than providing economic contribution for the local com